Review: The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, Florida, USA
Fort Lauderdale has a number of hotels to chose room; many with close proximity to the Marina and waterways that flow through the city. The pricing of hotels in Fort Lauderdale varies greatly, as does the condition and quality of any property. Our stay at the Fort Lauderdale Hilton Marina offered a mid price early entry level resort stay in the Sunshine State that was well suited to business travel or entry level resort holiday living.
This post is one chapter on our trip to Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States of America. This trip was enhanced through Alaska Mileage Plan and through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.
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Review: The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, Fort Lauderdale, United States of America
Getting to the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina:
I ended up at this property as MrsWT73 had an aerospace convention that was occuring at this location.
The property was located fifteen minutes away from the Fort Lauderdale international airport. After getting off Alaska Airlines Seattle – Fort Lauderdale, I ended up renting a car for my three days in Florida from Avis,
It is situated right near the draw bridge of one of the entrances to the Fort Lauderdale inlets which presented a great opportunity to get some photos from the bridge the next morning
The initial arrival is good as it can get for a hotel that appears to be 30 – 40 years old. The hotel had a small but compact lobby that always had people in it.
I always find it interesting when a property is a flight crew hotel. It sets the tone and calibre of any property. This means it’s usually at a specific price point and that the hotel is okay with a high turnover operation.
The Room: Two Double Beds, Intra Coastal View, Balcony
I arrived to the property and found my way to the room. MrsWT73 had checked in the night before and was already settled in her assigned room.
At this property, the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina has several low rise (3-4 story) buildings they call villas (everyone else would call them wings) that surround an outdoor pool, centered with a 10+ story tower that is the newer part of the facility. There appears to be no difference between tower or low rise assignment and the rooms are not marketed separately. We ended up in the low rise buildings that were situated closer to the water.
The Two Double Beds Intra Coastal View room was smaller than an average hotel room, but consistent with the older era. The room had been renovated and was fit to modern standards. Due to high occupancy, we were assigned a double bed room assignment. It had a reasonable view of the boats floating by on the marina.
My apologies on the room mess, but MrsWT73 wasn’t too keen on taking my Nikon camera DSLR with her on her earlier arrival date to take room photos prior to messing up the room.
The room also featured a standard sized bathroom with a shower tub combination.
Around the Property:
The property is pretty well maintained. It’s definitely an older four star property that’s had several updates over the years.
Impressive Marina Views and Grounds.
First the good: The property is situated right on the canal waterways of Fort Lauderdale. This means that depending on your room assignment, you may get the opportunity of seeing some terrific hardware (yachts!) floating right outside your room. There is water on two sides of this hotel so there is great opportunity to get some water views in. Overall, this was probably the most impressive feature of the hotel.
Just based on the configuration of some of the hotel buildings, there were some sides of the hotel that were quite shady and dark. If you’ need a bright looking room, you’d want to avoid the north facing views.
An Outdoor Pool:
There was also a pool with occasional morning sun. Unfortunately, there is no real view from the pool, other than that of the nearby towers themselves.
There is no way anyone should confuse this with a resort property. Being a bit blunt, it’s a waterfront property with access to a pool. The property did not have the usual standard of things that is typically associated with a resort; expansive grounds, activities and other attractions.
There was not any issue getting a lounger seat at the pool. However, there were not a lot of seats that were in full sun at all times as a result of the configuration of the towers.
The property has had mixed reviews on Trip Advisor, but I think if you’re coming to Fort Lauderdale and spending $300 a night on a hotel room on water, instead of a $450 on a beach, then you need to adjust the expectations slightly.
The bad: there isn’t much around this property if you don’t have a car. While there is a Chipotle, an Bayoni Italian restaurant and the Boatyard restaurant about a 7-10 minute walk by foot from the property, I can’t imagine many guests that are of the hotels’ target audience actually walking the distance. Conveniently, there is a Walgreen’s Pharmacy across the street from this complex.
The Bottom Line: The Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina
MrsWT73 wasn’t too impressed with this place. I won’t share the wording here, but needless to say it wasn’t up to her usual high standards. Whereas, I found it to be a perfectly fine business hotel or a location to have a convention. The setting was nice but wholly functional. It wasn’t an aspirational place to be if I were to have travelled all this way but it might fit the bill for someone looking for a short stopover or a business hotel. All in all, it was a nice introduction to Florida with better things to come.